With the continuous development of the economy, more and more foreigners want to start their own business in China. It’s also becoming easier to register companies in China. Generally, having a Chinese company name is the first step in the process of registering a company.As per 1 March 2021, the amended Regulations on the Administration of Enterprise Name Registration (“Regulations”) have come into effect in China. The Regulations offer companies tools to register their business name easier and faster with the State Administration of Market Regulation (SAMR).
In this article we will deepen the key changes as introduced under the new Regulations and what the implications are for practice.
No Pre-Approval Required
Nowadays, the company will be able to register its business name directly through the self-declaration system of the SAMR. This system holds an intelligent examination pursuant to which companies can search, select and declare a name that they would like to register.
Enterprises will be able to choose their business name promptly as no waiting period applies for using the name. The SAMR nevertheless retains the right to refuse the company name registration by giving a written explanation. There is no time limit included in the Regulations for refusing such a registration.
In addition to the self-declaration system, an open database of all the business names will become available. This provides a good framework ofreference for the names that have been used by existing companies at the level of provinces, cities and counties.
Guidelines about Company Name
The Regulations provide further guidelines with regard to the elements and the structure of the company name. The company can only register one name and the name can be used commercially.
In China, only the Chinese language name has legal effect; as a legal matter, the English is not relevant. This means you can use any English name you want. The English company name is only used for engraved chapters.
Chinese company names follow above rigid structure. The elements in  square brackets are fixed by the local government. This means the only thing we need determine now is the Company Name.
Business Rules Required by Business Administration for Company Name Approval.
1. Don’t use Arabic numerals, letters or two capital figures in brand
E.g. 12, AB, shi’er，er’shi and so on
2. Don’t use specific noun phrase and adjective in the company name
E.g. very, number 1, top, forest, industry, century and so on
3.Don’t use the name of territory, district, or country in the company name.
Company names containing the word ‘China’ require approval of China’s State Council. However, wholly foreign-owned or controlled foreign-invested enterprises are allowed to use the word ‘China’ in their business name. Furthermore, old company names that are found in the self-declaration system and have been cancelled or revoked, can only be adopted after a period of 1 year.
4.Don’t use the terms which are used to modify industry and misleading terms in the company name.
E.g. if the industry is “the information service of finance”, the industry can’t use the terms of “fast loan, good loan” or other terms like this as company name. And if the industry is “investment consulting” or “investment management” is not allow using the terms “venture capital” or something like this to be the company name.
5.When inquiring company name, it should be searched with two consecutive words
So the more words in a name are more difficult to search, and the name is better to have 2 characters. e.g. If you want to search “ke li si ting”, you need to search“keli”,“lisi”,“siting” and the name can’t repeat with others.
So you’d better prepare 5-15 Chinese company names.
6.Don’t use the similar names with the well-known names and famous enterprises.